Copyright

How to Become a Registered Cardiovascular Technician

Learn how to become a registered cardiovascular technician. Research the education and career requirements, certification and experience required for starting a career as a registered cardiovascular technician.

View popular schools

Should I Become a Registered Cardiovascular Technician?

Cardiovascular technicians use imaging machines and technology to diagnose and treat cardiac problems; this may include the heart and surrounding blood vessels. Technicians assist cardiologists, and specific duties may include answering patient questions, performing ultrasound procedures, recognizing abnormal images, inserting catheters, recording findings, and passing on results to physicians.

Find schools that offer these popular programs

  • Athletic Trainer
  • Cardiovascular Technologies
  • Electrocardiograph Tech. - ECG, EKG
  • Electroencephalographic Tech. - EEG, END
  • EMT and Paramedic
  • Genetic Therapy
  • Industrial Radiologic Technology
  • Medical Radiologic Therapist
  • Nuclear Medical Technologist
  • Perfusionist
  • Physician Assistant
  • Radiation Protection Technology
  • Radiological Science and Technologies
  • Respiratory Care Therapy
  • Surgical Technologies
  • Ultrasound and Sonography Technologies

Career Requirements

Degree Level Associate's degree
Degree Name Cardiovascular technology
Certification Most employers prefer certification through Cardiovascular Credentialing International
Key Skills Ability to communicate effectively with patients, follow instructions and keep accurate records; know how to work ultrasound machines and other cardiovascular equipment
Salary (2015) $40,595 per year (median)

Sources: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Monster.com job postings in July 2012.

Step 1: Earn an Associate's Degree

An associate's degree in cardiovascular technology combines academic coursework and laboratory training. Students have an opportunity to learn about various cardiac diseases and symptoms, diagnostic procedures and aseptic techniques. Laboratory work takes place at area hospitals or on-campus clinics. Specific courses include EKG analysis, cardiovascular care, cardiovascular hemodynamics, echocardiography, ultrasound principles and cardiovascular agents.

Success Tip:

  • Choose a specialization. During the second year of the program, you'll have the option to decide whether you want to specialize in invasive or non-invasive cardiovascular technology. Invasive cardiology involves inserting catheters inside a patient, while non-invasive cardiology involves ultrasound and EKG equipment.

Step 2: Participate in an Internship

In order to obtain experience in the field, students in a cardiovascular technology program need to complete an internship in a medical setting. This is an opportunity for students to work and learn under an experienced cardiovascular technician and begin interacting with patients. During an internship, students can apply what they've learned in the classroom to a real-world setting. As students gain more experience, they'll be allowed to have more responsibilities during their internship.

Step 3: Obtain Certification

Many employers prefer to hire certified technicians. Graduates of a cardiovascular technology program can pursue the Registered Cardiac Sonographer (RCS) or the Registered Cardiovascular Invasive Specialist (RCIS) designation. Applicants for each designation must demonstrate proof of graduation from an accredited cardiovascular technology program in addition to employment verification. Those who are specializing in non-invasive cardiac technology pursue the RCS, while invasive technicians can obtain the RCIS. Each designation requires that individuals pass an examination. Certification in multiple specialties can increase opportunities for advancement.

Next: View Schools

What is your highest level of education?

Some College
Complete your degree or find the graduate program that's right for you.
High School Diploma
Explore schools that offer bachelor and associate degrees.
Still in High School
Earn your diploma of GED. Plan your undergraduate education.

Schools you may like:

Popular Schools

The listings below may include sponsored content but are popular choices among our users.

    • Post-Bachelor's Certificate in Biotechnology Enterprise

    What is your highest level of education?

    • MSHS Medical Laboratory Sciences
    • MSHS in Immunohematology and Biotechnology
    • MSHS in Molecular Diagnostic Sciences
    • MSHS in Translational Microbiology

    What is your highest level of education?

    • Master of Science in Health Informatics

    What is your highest level of education?

    • Master of Science in Healthcare Management

    What is your highest level of education?

    • MS in Nursing
    • Master of Healthcare Administration
    • MS in Nursing - Nurse Administrator
    • BS in Health Science
    • Bachelors of Science in Nursing - RN to BSN
    • BS in Healthcare Administration

    What is your highest level of education completed?

    • Doctor of Strategic Leadership - Healthcare Leadership
    • Master of Arts in Organizational Leadership - Healthcare Management
    • Master of Business Administration - Healthcare Management

    What is your highest level of education completed?

    • RN to BSN
    • AS in Medical Assisting

    What is your highest level of education?

  • What is your highest level of education completed?

  • What is your highest level of education?

  • What is your highest level of education completed?

Find your perfect school

What is your highest level of education?